Football was first played as a club sport at Iowa in 1872, with intramural games against other colleges played as early as 1882, but it was not until 1889 that the University of Iowa first officially recognized a varsity football team. Beginning in 1892, Iowa played for six seasons as a member of the Western Interstate University Football Association against three other Midwestern state universities. In 1899, again playing as an independent, Iowa completed its first undefeated football season, which led to an invitation to join the Western Conference, now known as the Big Ten Conference. In 1900, the Hawkeyes finished another undefeated season and won a share of the Western Conference title in their first year of Conference play. In 1907, Iowa helped form the new Missouri Valley Intercollegiate Athletic Association with the other three university members of the former WIUFA and participated in football in the new league, while retaining its existing membership in the Western Conference. Iowa tied for the league championship in the first season of competition, but would leave the conference soon thereafter.